By Rutore Samugabo
One of the Kampala regime’s mouthpieces, Chimpreports has come out, on Friday 8, January 2019, with a lengthy article “EXCLUSIVE: Arrests, Military Gestures Strain Uganda, Rwanda Relations” that aims to validate the most recent harassments, abductions and torture of Rwandan citizens travelling to Uganda.
Chimpreports begins that, “On February 7, 2019, Ugandan security operatives raided a Kampala-bound Jaguar bus for a routine inspection. During the search, several Rwandans were picked from the rest of other travellers and detained at Kisoro Police Station. This followed a tip-off to Ugandan intelligence about a trip of suspected Rwandan state agents to Uganda”.
But who are these “agents”? Virunga Post has in the past few days been bringing its readers updates about Rwandans who have suffered incarceration at Kisoro Police Station and other places in Uganda. They include people that cross into Uganda for ordinary visits to relatives. Some are people well over 50-years old from rural areas neighboring Ugandan districts. Some are women that have travelled with children as little as 5 months. Some are teenagers going to visit a parent that lives in Uganda. And so on.
One thing that is becoming clearer, following the escalating numbers of abductions, is that the border of Uganda and Rwanda has become much more dangerous for Rwandan citizens.
Uganda’s Immigration Department, headed by Brigadier General Apollo Kasiita and heavily deployed with senior military officers, seems to have decided to militarize Uganda’s borders with Rwanda.
Kasiita and his immigration department appear to have been integrated into the CMI, ISO, and Police competition for access to funds that must be justified by dubious operations, including abducting, harassing, and jailing innocent Rwandans.
No one will stop it because it justifies Kampala’s policy of hostility that is essential in efforts geared towards destabilizing Rwanda.
A telltale sign that harassment of Rwandans is a tool in this strategy is that none of all the arrested people are ever brought to courts of law and charged with the alleged spying.
Elsewhere in Chimpreports’ lengthy piece, it implies that Rwanda hired Kitata’s Boda Boda 2010 motorcyclists to assassinate prominent Ugandans from Muslim clerics, to the late police spokesman Andrew Kaweesi, MP Abiriga, police officer Kirumira, and so many others. However, the sophisticated weaponry and firing precision used in these assassinations always pointed a finger at highly trained operatives in the mould Special Forces Command (SFC) as prime suspects. It is an open secret that the authorities in Kampala use the boda boba operators to deflect attention from the true killers.
A key aspect of the deflection is to maintain confusion by obscuring the real causes of bad relations between Uganda and her southern neighbor: Uganda’s support, facilitation and sponsorship of groups that have openly declared war on Rwanda.
One of the earlier Rwandan sacrificial lambs to the Kampala lie, also mentioned in the CMI coverup, is Rene Rutagungira whom CMI forcefully abducted in 2017, and whose whereabouts aren’t clear up to now. Chimp Reports created the fiction that “Lt.” Rutagungira (he is a civilian), was a “Kigali operative” heading “a sleeper cell” responsible for the alleged abductions and that it is the reason he was abducted, locked up, and tortured. They abducted him and then accused him of abduction!
Chimpreports however prefers to regurgitate Kampala intelligence claims that some of these people were in “illegal possession of firearms”. It specifically names Peter Siborurema, Emmanuel Rwamucyo a businessman in Isingiro (western Uganda), Augustine Rutayisire, Eric Rugorotsi and Bernard Kwizera. Most of the people were arrested in broad-day light in public places (some in restaurants, taxi parks, and in bars, as was the case for Rene). It beats imagination how someone can go out for lunch carrying a machine gun or an AK-47 that CMI often claims to have found in their possession.
One thing Kampala’s misinformation organs never mention is that CMI is an active participant in the recruitment activities for RNC. So when they approach someone, like a Rwandan businessman in Uganda, and ask him to join RNC or contribute money and he refuses, they “fix him”. They plant guns on him and charge him with illegal possession of firearms. It has happened to a number of Banyarwanda that refused to be party to RNC activities, either to be recruited as fighters or as contributors of funds.
On the other hand, Kigali hosts no anti-Uganda groups on its territory; facilitates none, and has shown itself far above such things. The gravest thing Chimpreports can accuse Rwanda of is that “Kagame was seen wearing military attire recently, therefore that is a show of hostility!”
Which begs the question: Between Uganda’s facilitating of an active rebellion on the one hand and President Kagame’s wearing military attire – that any other head of state in the world can do as commander in chief (and Museveni does on the regular) on the other, who is involved in a “show of hostility?”
The Congo factor
An important aspect of the Chimpreports article is its timing.
Why now? People are asking. Is Kampala frantic with worry about what FDLR officials Ignace Nkaka aka LaForge Fils Bazeye and Theophile Abega – widely reported to be in the custody of Kigali after Kinshasa reportedly deported them – are revealing about Kampala’s role at the nexus of anti-Kigali hostilities in the sub-region?
What a speaker of FDLR and head of its intelligence have to tell interrogators must “seriously scare Kampala”, said the analyst who preferred anonymity.
The purpose of the Chimpreports story could be for Kampala “to get ahead of the curve” on developments that could further implicate it in wrongdoing.
Yet Kampala’s complicity in wrongdoing is apparent in many ways. The UN group of Experts on Congo report, in addition to Burundi, diplomatically says that “a certain country in East Africa facilitates the rebel network” (bent on destabilizing Rwanda).
That country is Uganda, all the facts clearly indicate, including President Museveni’s own admissions on the Kikagati group.
One of the claims in Chimpreports’ article is that on 1st February, President Museveni at State Lodge Nakasero met with the UN’s Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Burundi, Michael Kafando. It says the official carried “a special message” from Secretary General Antonio Guterres, “appreciating him (Museveni) for ‘his endless efforts towards keeping the East African region safe’”.
Yet there is no record anywhere to show that the UN head thanked the Ugandan leader for regional stability. Rather, analysts point out, the fact that the envoy visited following the recent publication of the UN report is strong indication that he came “to warn Museveni against destabilizing the region.”
Kampala must be getting especially desperate as it’s scheme to destabilize Rwanda gets known to the world.